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Abu Dhabi: The Golden Boot is Mirko Vucinic’s unless something really drastic happens between now and May. The former Juventus striker fired two goals to increase his tally to a whopping 18 from 14 games and Argentine wonder boy scored his sixth as Al Jazira rallied brilliantly to defeat Ajman in the Arabian Gulf League at the Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium on Wednesday night.

The Spiders were in danger of relinquishing the top spot after Ajman had nudged ahead with two minutes left in the first half. But Montenegro forward Vucinic, nicknamed the ‘Balkan Maradona,’ scored on 50 and 58 minutes and Lanzini struck a freak corner straight into goal as Al Jazira won 3-1. Eric Gerets’ men moved to 30 points at the top, while Ajman stayed rooted second from last with nine points.

Meanwhile, Al Wahda moved temporarily to third with 28 points, two points behind Al Jazira, after a solitary goal win over basement dwellers Ittihad Kalba at the Kalba Union Sports & Cultural Club Stadium. Sebastian Tagliabue scored the match-winner. Elsewhere, at the Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan Stadium, Al Dhafrah moved to ninth after shocking Al Wasl 3-1.

Al Jazira showed their intent early on and came up with a few sorties in the opening 15 minutes or so but the Ajman defence managed to cut them off. Ajman, meanwhile, were relying more on counters.

The game burst to life though on 24 minutes after the League’s top scorer Mirko Vucinic was felled by Ahmed Ibrahim. Veteran Basheer Saeed, a winter signing from champions Al Ahli, stepped up but his sizzling freekick was kept out by Ali Mesmari. Later, on 30 minutes, Abdulla Mousa made a fine run down the left but instead of crossing, he teed it up for Manuel Lanzini, who cleverly back heeled it for Ali Mabkhout. But the striker’s effort deflected off a defender and went for a corner.

Five minutes later, Lanzini took matters into his own hands and set off on a run down the middle before going right and taking strike. But his scorcher sailed over the cross bar. Ajman almost went ahead on the counter two minutes later after Khalid Sabeel botched a clearance. Boris Kabi pounced on it and slipped through but his effort hit the woodwork.

Their efforts paid dividends though as they took the lead with two minutes left in the half. Driss Fettouhi’s left-footer was blocked by Khalid Al Senani but Mohamed Alantaly latched onto the rebound and squared it up from the left for Rafael Crivellaro, who slid it past Al Senani.

Gerets’ half-time talk seemed to have worked as Al Jazira cancelled that out five minutes after the restart. Vucinic’s first attempt was blocked by Ali Mesmari and the former rushed in and slipped it in on the rebound. And they took the lead eight minutes later with Vucinic getting his second of the night. Vucinic played a one-two with Khamis Ismail before conjuring a blink-and-you-miss header after Ismail sent a clever lob. Lanzini then, curled in a corner straight into goal, on 71 minutes. Ajman could have pulled one back two minutes later but Dris Fettouhi’s left-footed freekick was saved by a diving Al Senani.

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